Doctor Who: Steven Moffat on Peter Capaldi's Doctor

News Simon Brew 13 May 2014 - 07:19

Steven Moffat has a brief word or two about Peter Capaldi and John Hurt in Doctor Who...

Currently filming, as you more than likely know, is Doctor Who series 8, which will mark Peter Capaldi's first series run as the Doctor. More and more details about the series are gradually coming to the fore, and Doctor Who chief Steven Moffat has been chatting to the Radio Times about the casting of Capaldi.

"There is something about Peter's demeanour, his eyes, his attitude", Moffat said. "He's tremendously bright and that comes out on screen. When you choose a Doctor, you want somebody who is utterly compelling, attractive in an odd way. None of the Doctors are conventionally attractive but they're all arresting".

Moffat went on to say that "Peter is a man in his 50s, but is terribly boyish and young at times". He then added, of John Hurt's Doctor - as seen in The Day Of The Doctor - that "I think it's nice for a hero to have a dark chapter, although it's a chapter we will probably never see again because that somehow isn't Doctor Who".

The new issue of Radio Times is on sale now. Many thanks to Blogtor Who for the heads up.

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Let's hope that the stories start to be interesting, scary and... comprehensible. This abstract rubbish we've been fed for the last few years is annoying.

Agreed. I've still liked the show but its storytelling has been shoddy for a while and has made some of Matt Smith's stories less enjoyable as they could have been.
Better stories, better told and scarier.

I tend not to pay attention to anythingSteven Moffat says as he frequently lies to the press just to be mischevious.

We can but hope but I'm not. What incentive have the production team to change the show's style and style of writing when it remains successful. The Moff will continue to write his aren't I clever style of writing which works much better on Sherlock because it is done properly. Only when he leaves is there any real prospect of a radical overhaul, and even that depends on finding someone capable of writing and running it properly.

Very excited about Capaldi. I only hope Moffat's over his Disneyfied version of Doctor Who - no more Doctor Window Wardrobe nonsense, and the awful Time Of The Doctor falls into that category too.

My favourite was the (what became Amy having baby River) cliff hanger we were told was going to be a game changer and nothing will be the same again. Right. So agreed, the hype is rarely worth listening to on this show, albeit here it's limited to PC, who probably will be great.

Please be amazing...

I've spent a little while in the past trying to put my frustration with the show's often meandering plots and nonsensicle resolutions into words, but I think "abstract rubbish" sums it up perfectly.

I often feel that I keep tuning into it because it's a program with a lot of interesting potential, but not necessarily one which regularly manages to live up to it.

Well said, sir. Here's hoping Moffat and co write better for Peter Capaldi than for, frankly, most of Smith's tenure. Hoping Capaldi may take the character in a Pertwee 'handy Doctor' kind of way long term.

He's not really saying much of anything here. It's very abstract. We expect him to say that Capaldi will be/is good.

I still want my Valeyard. That's the dark chapter that Steven owes us.

I'm hoping we get some more official photos soon. I've had enough of Capaldi pointing at me.

Seems a bit strange to acknowledge that the approach is successful but to also say that the show isn't being run properly and should be changed, doesn't it?

Quality versus popularity. Given the ratings and (for what it’s worth) AI figures, it’s v popular. But then so are UK tabloids or reality shows. Lots of people love new Who, lots don’t. But it’s no 24, Breaking Bad or Sopranos in terms of consistent script quality, cliffhangers or drama in many people’s opinion. Whichever side of the fence a person is on, it’s fair comment that SM appears the most divisive producer since JNT in polarising opinion. And that says something.

Each thing I hear about Capaldi makes it feel like we're getting who will be like a "Pertwee 2.0", which makes me happy.

It's curious how they haven't yet cobbled up a trailer from the finished footage. Perhaps soon.

Stephen Moffat is a hack, a terrible show runner, and I'm wise enough now to no longer believe any of the hokum that comes out his arrogant mouth.

If the popularity is a given then how, beyond the personal, do we assess quality? One would assume that those with whom it is popular find it to be of good quality, so are there other marks of quality which trump that (fewer awards, poorer critical reviews etc.) ? I don't really follow such things for this show so am asking genuinely, incidentally.

Otherwise, it seems a bit like saying a show should move to match a minority's taste over the majority's ( assuming that the suggestion isn't that the show would be even more popular if only one's personal taste were followed).

i will personally hunt down anyone who mentions the actor who player Moriarty in sherlock on this thread

I don't mind the pointing. I do mind the clothes, especially the baggy, saggy trousers.

I’ve greatly enjoyed Moffat Who and look forward to seeing Peter Capaldi in action. I’ve actually liked how Moffat integrates the use of time travel into the broader narrative instead of it being merely an explanation for how characters got from point A to point B. He’s willing to take more risks and experiment with the show’s formula than his predecessor was. I can understand that some people don’t like to see something they loved change so drastically, but I enjoy it. It’s nice seeing an episode with the Daleks that doesn’t end with almost all of them being destroyed. They actually feel like a credible threat and a large power in the universe. It hasn’t all been perfect, but it has still been very interesting and entertaining.

Apparently voting down comments isn't possible anymore. So I'll just say I strongly disagree. The stories have been interesting and sufficiently scary. If you find the show abstract rubbish and annoying then Doctor Who is not for you.

Good point. But Dr Who has a built-in audience going back 50 years who will watch sub-par episodes in the hope that it will once again become the show they loved.

It is a good point and requires some thought to answer (and I don't have a particular good one yet). I suppose there is no simple objective measure of dramatic quality. It's deduced from a mixture of critic reviews, ratings, balance of opinion on forums etc. DW has become incredibly like marmite in recent years was my main point and its potential imo isn't being fulfilled other than the visuals (but plenty of other people think the exact opposite).

That may be true, but the show's international popularity and fame has only grown since Moffat took over. As an American fan you had to search far and wide to find anyone who knew anything about Doctor Who even during the Davies era. Shortly after Moffat took over, it seemed like now suddenly everyone watched Doctor Who. It's still far from the biggest
fanbase in the States, but it has only been gaining momentum.
Also keep in mind that the majority of current Who viewers buy their episodes online for iplayer. I don't think people who think the series is subpar would willingly pay money to watch one episode when they can just wait for it on TV.
Although I think you make a valid point worth considering, it also seems like you're trying to generally be dismissive of the people who watch Doctor Who because they do currently enjoy it.

Yeah, very odd given there are apparently 5 completed episodes by now... Surely enough to create a showreel for investors and provide a flavour of what's to come. The fact none of the episode titles have yet been released is also intriguing. Its five months since Capaldi started on the show and we don't know what any of the stories are called...?

Cool handle dude! ;o)

He says Capaldi can be boyish despite being in his fifties - reassurance to Matt's fans? The new Doctor will have a young outlook despite his apparent age, much like Pertwee. I also liked his analogy: "showing the senior consultant rather than the medical student" which implies the new Doctor feels it is time to stop disguising his age and embrace it instead. Okay so he doesn't look the 1000 plus years he ACTUALLY is but at least he can convince his adversaries he isn't some spotty teenager either... Hurt's War Doctor and his great age (Hurt is nearly 20 years older than Hartnell and Capaldi) explains the sudden "cult of youth" embraced by the Ninth, Tenth and especially the Eleventh as they attempt to distance themselves from this rogue incarnation. (Though it does imply the Doctor can influence what age he appears to be, whereas for the most part he has to accept what he's given appearance-wise ie. no ginger hair) It is time to return to a more mature-looking incarnation, however the fan girls who are besotted with Tennant and Smith should appreciate this isn't a return to the Hartnell days per se.Whereas Hartnell was the same age as Capaldi, he played the Doctor as a grandfather figure often appearing about twenty years older than his true age. Pertwee, also in his fifties whilst playing the role, tended to be spry and outwit the villains with a quick bout of Venusian Akido. in 1963 being 55 years old was seen as being in late middle-age. Today 55 is late middle-youth. Certainly, anyone who was teenager when Punk happened would never want to be thought of as "old". Capaldi's Doctor, a "rebel Time Lord" in shiny "Doc Martens"-style Loake boots appears to embrace the "50 is the new 30" mentality. I love the fact we don't know too much even five months down the line. For once the show perhaps will really surprise us again - in a good way!

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